EFI Nazomi Printer

Written by Mark Speyers Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Credit: EFI Press Release, Sept. 4th, 2018

"Whitebird is Soaring to the Forefront of Innovation with an EFI Nozomi C18000 – Canada’s First Single-Pass, Ultra-high-speed Corrugated Inkjet Press 

Whitebird, one of Canada’s leading independent boxmakers, will offer faster turnaround and greater versatility in high-end corrugated packaging production with a new, breakthrough technology addition, the EFI™ Nozomi C18000 ultra-high-speed inkjet press from Electronics For Imaging, Inc. (Nasdaq:EFII). The second-generation Hamilton, Ontario-based company is becoming a driver in the industry’s important analog-to-digital transformation with the award-winning press – the very first single-pass, ultra-high-speed digital corrugated packaging production system to be installed in Canada. 

A new era for fast turnarounds on packaging designs
Whitebird will be able to produce premium shelf-ready packaging and corrugated displays in the exact quantities customers need with the Nozomi press – a key advantage that has been all but impossible to achieve in the past, considering the larger fixed costs and minimum run lengths required on high-graphic corrugated packaging using analog flexo and litho lamination methods. 

The Nozomi press shortens the time needed to launch new designs from weeks or months to just days, which means Whitebird clients throughout Canada and the U.S. will be able to drive greater product sell-through and better marketing performance with more-targeted corrugated packaging and display advertising strategies. The new press, which is scheduled to be installed in the fourth quarter of 2018, also builds on Whitebird’s longstanding commitment to customers by adding fast-turnaround digital production to the popular same- and next-day order processing and delivery services the company already offers on inventoried items.

'Our customers know they can achieve greater sell-through with clever versioning strategies and interesting new designs, but excessive analog run-length requirements often restrict them to only using packaging that they already have in inventory,' said Whitebird Vice President William Heikoop. 'We looked closely at the single-pass offerings in the market, and it was clear that the EFI Nozomi press was the best option to provide more versatility in the corrugated packaging supply chain and better serve customers with superior-quality, direct-to-board digital print.'

High-quality, ultra-high-speed, direct-to-board production
The 71-inch (1.8-meter) wide EFI Nozomi C18000 single-pass, LED inkjet, ultra-high-speed press delivers on the promise of digital production in an era where brands know the importance of using data-driven supply chain and design strategies to preserve capital and create new growth. Operating at speeds up to 246 linear feet (75 linear meters) per minute, the press can print up to 10,000 35x35-inch (890x890-mm) boards per hour two-up. 

The single-pass, piezo grayscale inkjet writing system on the Nozomi press delivers accurate, high-fidelity color, including consistent reproduction on solid areas. And, the EFI Fiery® NZ-1000 digital front end (DFE) print server and production system used to drive the press provides blazing performance, outstanding color management, and the ability to produce versioned/multi-SKU work and even personalized packaging at full speed. 

The press is a premier technology for high-volume digital corrugated packaging production: It has received top industry honors such as a 2018 Printing Industries of America InterTech™ award and a 2018 SGIA Product of the Year award. And, leading corrugated manufacturers in Europe, North America, Asia and the South Pacific all use EFI Nozomi presses to meet growing demand for high-quality digital production. 

Additional features and benefits of the EFI Nozomi C18000 include:

Compatibility with a broad range of boards, from F-flute to triple-wall board, and including traditional Kemi, mottled, bleach and kraft materials – with all of them printing at full press-rated speeds 
Assured sustainability with output certified for OCC recyclability and repulpability by the Western Michigan University Recycling, Paper and Coating Pilot Plant – a leading certification organization for corrugated recycling
A 100% in-line image quality inspection system that actively manages and optimizes inkjet nozzle alignment and uniformity errors for superior imaging quality
A high-productivity, permanent head architecture that eliminates the downtime associated with replacing consumable printheads.

'Whitebird’s executives have long seen the promise of what digital can achieve and we are excited to help them put that vision into action with Canada’s first ultra-high-speed, single-pass digital corrugated packaging press,' said José Luis Ramón Moreno, vice president and general manager, EFI Industrial Printing. 'The significant advantages Whitebird’s clients will receive with the EFI Nozomi’s high-end LED inkjet technology will further improve the company’s already strong reputation as a customer-centric packaging manufacturer delivering exceptional service and fast turnaround.'

Whitebird’s new, single-pass digital corrugated press is part of a complete ecosystem for corrugated manufacturing available from EFI, with leading edge inks, Fiery DFE technology and a complete EFI Corrugated Packaging Suite business and production management workflow."

Plates vs Dies

Written by Mark Speyers Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Plates vs. Dies: Understanding the Difference and What You Need to Know

Understanding the differences between printing “plates” and cutting “dies” and the tools used to create your packaging will give you an idea of how the entire process works. Proper tooling is vital to the creation of the perfect product for you. With precise edges and crisp printing, plates and dies are some of the most important tools to custom packaging. Let’s take a look at them and see what the differences are and what they’re all about.

Printing Plates

Flexographic printing is much like rubber stamps, print plates are thin and typically made with a rubber-like material. Lithographic printing is made of a thin plastic or metal. They are used to print line art and text directly onto your custom box. Digital printing does not use print plates at all.
The print plates are mounted to cylinders on a printing press and it runs through the ink and directly onto your box. Each colour requires a separate set of plates. As your design is cut from the plate, the negative parts of your design do not collect ink and does not show up on the box. The best way to describe this is, if you were to take a stamp, dip it in ink and place it on a piece of paper, this is the same result that printing plates create.

Cutting Dies

Each custom box has a unique design that goes beyond the artwork. Specific dimensions, handles or no handles, anything that you want to make your packaging uniquely your own, will require a cutting die. A cutting die is a tool made from heavy plywood and a steel rule, which is placed into the plywood in the shape of your box. Like the print plate, this gets mounted on a giant cylinder and as the corrugated sheet is passed through our machines, edges are cut, and creases are creased, and your box takes form.

Posted in Learn Corrugate

Mullen vs ECT Test

Written by Mark Speyers Tuesday, September 26, 2017

What is the difference between the Mullen Test and the Edge Crush Test (ECT)? You may have come across these terms in the corrugate industry, because they are a valuable testing standard. The Mullen Test has been around for a century and evaluates how much force a flat piece of corrugate can withstand. Such a test is good to determine if individual boxes can withstand the forces of handling without bursting. However, in the last 20 years or so, the supply chain saw more stacked packages on pallets, which led to the Edge Crust Test. Today, the ECT is the standard in Ontario for testing the stacking strength of a box, with 32 ECT being the most common.

So which test rating do you need? It depends on your supply chain, but for most packages, the ECT will be a helpful indicator of box strength in transit on a pallet, whereas the Mullen Test will be more applicable to individually shipped boxes where puncture and tear resistance are your primary concern.

Posted in Learn Corrugate

Endcap Display

Written by Mark Speyers Thursday, August 10, 2017

This retail endcap display is an excellent example of what we can create from corrugate. This display was die cut and constructed from laminated kraft to create an attractive finish. The display is custom printed to fit a specific promotion within a store. The bold blue color and quality printing finish is sure to catch the eyes of shoppers strolling by and drive up sales for what is being featured. Designed to showcase other items, it also fulfills the purpose of exhibiting Whitebird’s ability to produce and print a solid structure with clear custom printed design.

Coffee Mug Box

Written by Mark Speyers Friday, July 21, 2017

Another custom designed box has been completed. This specially crafted box is able to securely house its contents while maintaining a sleek design and a professional image. This box is die cut to create an attractive structure that assembles with ease. Our digital printing capabilities turn a box into something more. It changes the purpose of the box from being a mere carrying item into being a distinguishing aspect of your brand presentation. The package is the first interaction that the recipient will have with their product and this is an excellent opportunity to instantly impress. See how Whitebird’s ability to make custom boxes can advance your business needs.


All prices displayed in Canadian Dollars (CAD)